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AL East fantasy division preview

We're spinning around every division in baseball for their biggest fantasy baseball stories and players.

AL East  | Central | West ... NL East | Central | West

Arrivals

SP Chris Sale, Red Sox: Luckily, the fantasy ace already has experience pitching in hitter-friendly environments. More of a top-10 fantasy pitcher, not a top-five.

RP Aroldis Chapman, Yankees: Déjà vu all over again – re-signs with Bombers and remains one of the sport's best stoppers.

OF Matt Holliday, Yankees: Great park, DH role in the middle of the order should prolong his fantasy career. He may wind up a draft-day deal in deep leagues.

UPDATE - C Welington Castillo, Orioles: Displayed power with Arizona and will find a similar situation with Baltimore. Stealth second option for two-catcher lineups.

1B Mitch Moreland, Red Sox: Expect similar production from his Rangers days – often useful in mixed leagues but a safer deep piece.

UPDATE - OF Mallex Smith, Rays: Though he joins a crowded outfield, it could clear up with some trades, and Smith's speed remains worthy of speculation.

OF Seth Smith, Orioles: From Safeco Field to Camden Yards – talk about an upgrade. Still one of baseball's best top-side platoon plays.

UPDATE - OF Colby Rasmus, Rays: He'll play against righties in the outfield or at DH, competing with near doppelganger Corey Dickerson. Mixed leaguers shouldn't get too excited but can keep a casual eye on him.

X-factors

C Gary Sanchez, Yankees: Will command the price of a top-three catcher, if not the No. 1, after historic debut. His pace will slow, but he has the profile to live up to that billing.

OF Jose Bautista, Blue Jays: Since he's 36, that big power drop is ominous, especially since it was accompanied by injuries. How will he hold up? It's best to target him in the middle rounds, where owners can swallow disappointment a bit easier. Of course, if he holds up, that could be a cheap 30 home runs.

SP Drew Pomeranz, Red Sox: His increase in innings last year may lead to a cautious management of his use this year, though his pedigree remains worth using – albeit without high expectations.

Breakouts

SP Kevin Gausman and Dylan Bundy, Orioles: Gausman's second half (3.10 ERA) locks him in. Bundy may need another year before making the most of a promising 2016, though the risk dwindles late in mixed drafts.

SP Blake Snell, Rays: Taming walks would allow alluring total package to take a big step forward.

Value picks

DH Kendrys Morales, Blue Jays: Many drafters hate DH-only players. Big 2016 lands him in better locale for power.

Bust

SP Aaron Sanchez, Blue Jays: Skills didn't support sparkling ERA. Expect a drop-off. Still a useful middle-tier mixed depth arm, though, and still a foundation keeper piece.

SP Chris Tillman, Orioles: Don't let that win total cloud his otherwise risky profile.

Overvalued

SS Xander Bogaerts, Red Sox: Power increase was too drastic and won't last at that level. Must keep climbing in stolen bases to ward off big value drop, but it's not a safe bet.

SP Rick Porcello, Red Sox: Cy Young winners often get a fake boost the next fantasy season. He's not a 3.15 ERA guy, but he's a top-30 fantasy starter who probably has peaked.

On the rebound

SP David Price, Red Sox: Velocity and location must rebound, but there's plenty of profit potential for the longtime ace if a draft room underrates him.

SP Chris Archer: Archer's location issues led to a spike in homers allowed. Nearly every other peripheral remained the same (note the 3.41 xFIP, too). Still owns a top-20 SP baseline.

SP Marcus Stroman, Blue Jays: Second-half increase in strikeout rate hints at upside there. Still just 25 years old. Bargain alert….

SP Michael Pineda, Yankees: Led the AL with a 14.1 swinging-strike rate. ERA and homer issues continued to mask elite peripherals. Take the chance if he's cheap. Luis Severino, too.

3B Pablo Sandoval, Red Sox: Another year, another possible weight loss. Offseason speak aside, skilled hitter looks attractive for fantasy players filling a bench spot.

Position battles to watch

Yankees 1B: Greg Bird would've been a Breakout if Tyler Austin weren't around. The Yankees are calling this a competition, but it may become a platoon unless, perhaps, Austin outplays Aaron Judge for right field.

Prospects for 2017

Early in season

OF Andrew Benintendi, Red Sox

OF Aaron Judge, Yankees

Midseason or later

OF Clint Frazier, Yankees

SP Brent Honeywell, Rays

SS Willy Adames, Rays

1B Trey Mancini, Orioles

C Chance Sisco, Orioles

For more minor league coverage, check out our Prospects page.

Closer chronicles

No controversies.

Still, expect the Rays' Alex Colome to endure a mild dip in production, though he's mostly for real.

Boston has a clear understudy for Craig Kimbrel with newcomer Tyler Thornburg.

Dellin Betances remains worth owning even as New York's setup man.

Injury watch

Ready for spring training/start of season

OF Mookie Betts, Red Sox (knee)

2B Dustin Pedroia, Red Sox (knee)

3B/SS Matt Duffy, Rays (heel)

2B Devon Travis, Blue Jays (knee)

Return during season

C Wilson Ramos, Rays (knee)

Watch

SP Eduardo Rodriguez, Red Sox (knee)